Loretta A. Preska

Loretta A. Preska
Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
In office
2009  May 31, 2016
Preceded by Kimba Wood
Succeeded by Colleen McMahon
Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Assumed office
August 12, 1992
Nominated by George H. W. Bush
Preceded by Robert Joseph Ward
Personal details
Born (1949-01-07) January 7, 1949
Albany, New York
Spouse(s) Thomas J. Kavaler
Occupation Jurist (originally lawyer)

Loretta A. Preska (born January 7, 1949) is a judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.


Albany-born Loretta Preska attended The College of Saint Rose (B.A. 1970), Fordham University School of Law (J.D. 1973),[1] and New York University School of Law (LL.M. 1978).

Preska was an attorney in private practice in New York City from 1973 until 1992, initially with Cahill Gordon & Reindel and then with Hertzog, Calamari & Gleason (now Winston & Strawn).

Judge Preska was nominated by President George H. W. Bush on March 31, 1992, to a seat on the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York vacated by Robert Joseph Ward. She was confirmed by the United States Senate on August 11, 1992, and received her commission on August 12. Preska served as Chief Judge of her court for a seven-year term from June 1, 2009 to May 31, 2016.

Consideration for higher courts

In 2007, it was reported that Judge Preska was on President Bush's short list of potential Supreme Court nominees.[2] On September 9, 2008, Preska was nominated by President George W. Bush to be a United States Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.[3] As Preska was nominated after July 1, 2008, the unofficial start date of the Thurmond Rule during a presidential election year, no hearings were scheduled on her nomination, and the nomination was returned to Bush at the end of his term.

Notable cases

According to FBI documents his role as Sabu was key to charging hactivist Jeremy Hammond.[12][13]


Preska is married to Thomas J. Kavaler, with whom she attended law school. Kavaler was the editor-in-chief of the Fordham Law Review and is a partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel.[21]

See also


  1. "Captain Of The Mother Court: Judge Loretta Preska". law.fordham.edu (from Law360). February 19, 2014.
  2. Jan Crawford Greenburg, EXCLUSIVE: Women, Minorities Top Bush's Supreme Court Short List, ABC News, June 1, 2007
  3. Nominations and Withdrawals Sent to the Senate, Georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov; accessed November 4, 2016.
  4. "Leibovitz V. Paramount Pictures Corporation | Findlaw". Caselaw.findlaw.com. Retrieved 2016-11-04.
  5. "Featured Cases :: Justia Dockets & Filings". News.justia.com. Retrieved 2016-11-04.
  6. "Federal Reserve loses suit demanding transparency". Reuters. August 25, 2009.
  7. "Somali pirate sentenced to 33 years in US prison". BBC News. February 16, 2011.
  8. Honan, Edith (2009-06-09). "First Guantanamo suspect moved to U.S. for trial". Reuters. Retrieved 2016-11-04.
  9. Weiser, Benjamin (June 10, 2009). "A Plea of Not Guilty for Guantánamo Detainee". The New York Times.
  10. Weiser, Benjamin (September 17, 2008). "Woman Accused of Iraq Ties Is Ruled Unfit for Trial Again". The New York Times.
  11. Hurtado, Patricia (March 8, 2012). "'Anonymous' Hacker Won't Face Prosecution for Gun, Marijuana". Bloomberg L.P.
  12. Rashid, Fahmida Y. "Sabu Wins "Stay Out Of Jail Free" Card For Another Six Months". PC Magazine.
  13. "Anonymous hacker behind Stratfor attack faces life in prison", Rt.com, November 23, 2012.
  14. "Chicago man denied bail before NYC hacking trial", Chicagotribune.com, November 21, 2012.
  15. "The Other Bradley Manning: Jeremy Hammond Faces Life Term For WikiLeaks and Hacked Stratfor Emails", DemocracyNow.org, December 27, 2012
  16. Kavalar Affirmation, Freeanons.org; accessed November 4, 2016.
  17. Joseph Ax (July 31, 2014). "Microsoft ordered by U.S. judge to submit customer's emails from abroad". Reuters.
  18. Van Voris, Bob (August 1, 2014). "Microsoft Fails to Block U.S. Warrant for Ireland E-Mail". Bloomberg L.P.
  19. Wingfield, Nick & Cecilia Kang,"Microsoft Wins Appeal on Overseas Data Searches", The New York Times, July 14, 2016.
  20. Loretta Preska Weds Thomas J. Kavaler, a Fellow Lawyer, Nytimes.com, September 12, 1983.


Legal offices
Preceded by
Kimba Maureen Wood
Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Succeeded by
Colleen McMahon
Preceded by
Robert Joseph Ward
Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
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